You know what’s great about where we live? School doesn’t start here until September 2nd. Everyone else around the country is posting pictures of cute school uniforms and school supply lists and we are still knee deep in the long dog days of boring summer vacation. And you know what? I love boredom!
I’m sure my mom is shaking her head when she reads this because I was THAT kid who hated to be bored. But you know what my mom told me when I got bored when I was little? She said, “Go sit on your bed until you think of something to do.”
Now that I’m a parent I think that was the best answer ever. Of course I hated her for it at the time but I never sat on my bed longer than ten minutes. There was always something that was more fun to do than sitting on my bed. We didn’t even have television back then!! Not because I’m ancient (puleeze) but because my parents were hippie religious folks who thought that television was the devil’s personal portal into your brain. I’m half inclined to agree with them but whatever.
Then a while back (when I was married, you’ll probably remember those stories) I went on a week long camping trip to a lake without wifi or cable or pretty much ANYTHING to do but fish and you know what? I felt every single minute of that week-long trip. Every excruciatingly boring second. But it was good. I sat with my thoughts and I appreciated the beauty all around me and I felt quiet inside. Quieter than I have in probably forever. I felt small in the great big world that we call home. My schedule, my work, my ego… were all just not very important. And when that week was over I didn’t feel like I needed a vacation to get over my vacation. I was ready to go home. I just wanted to go home and make stuff. I wanted to bake pies and host parties and start things. It was really good for me.
I’ve been chasing that elusive boredom ever since. Don’t get me wrong. I love being busy as much as the next person (Will someone please buy me this?) but the older I get, the more I feel like time is going by too fast and I just want it to stop for a minute.
Now the tricky question: Do I tell my daughter to go sit on her bed to think up something to do every time she is bored? Hah! No. Not so much. We use screen time and art supplies to head off boredom around here. Thankfully, I happen to have the kid with the longest attention span ever (yes, she is a freak and yes, she got it from Toby) so this doesn’t come up much but when it does I usually just head off all the whining and complaining with a trip to the pool.
The pool is our happy place. We FULLY appreciate that our apartment complex has a pool. We have embraced chlorine hair as a fashion statement. I’m still working on trying to get her to play by herself and not hang on me every minute or demand being thrown over my head into some kind of canon-ball, loopti-loop splash thing but for the most part this is where I go to go sit and be bored. And yes, I’m guilty of looking at my phone every other five minutes but I do feel those five minutes in between phone checking. Every second of them.
Recently, (while not being bored between phone checking) I broke out the waterproof camera for a craft we did for Alphamom. Why do I always forget to use that thing? It’s the coolest camera ever. Day-Glo rainbow bikinis from Target aren’t so shabby either. Why don’t they come in my size?!
Hold up. Did you go click on our link for pool noodle tic tac toe? No?!! Well, go CLICK. It’s the most awesome craft ever and I think it will go down in my personal record book as the easiest. SERIOUSLY: EASY. Don’t be lazy. Just go make it already because it’s fun. And then you can get back to me about how much fun back to school is because we are still enjoying summer over here. Every single excruciating second of it.
I don’t know why I didn’t think of this earlier. Craft Camp at my house! We had one last week and in spite of my usual harried craziness, the attendees claimed to have fun. I think I might schedule another one in August. Email me if you are local and interested.
We made friendship bracelets with friend-thumbprint beads. They turned out super cute. You can learn more about thumbprint beads over at AlphaMom. They are really easy to make and great for those long boring summer days.